Most worksite wellness programs today are unbalanced and fragmented. You do want a balanced and non-fragmented program right?
For a smooth vehicle ride your tires need to be properly inflated, properly balanced and not evenly worn. To achieve optimal impact on employee well-being, your wellness program needs to be properly balanced and not fragmented. Unfortunately today, most worksite wellness programs are not making a difference because they are either unbalanced or they are fragmented.
The predominant focus of worksite wellness programs today is only on physical health. Since wellness is a multidimensional concept, this focus solely on physical health clearly makes most employers based wellness initiatives unbalanced from the start. A balanced approach to illness would reflect worksite based interventions in all the dimensions of wellness, not just physical health.
Most worksites, like the communities in which you reside, encompass individuals with a range of health and wellbeing strengths and needs. Traditionally, employees are segmented into groups on the basis of their health risks. The standard groupings typically include:
• No/low risk
• Moderate risk
• High risk
Most worksite wellness programs are also fragmented today because they usually focus only on employees in the moderate or high risk categories.
Even though the no risk/low-risk employee population often encompasses approximately 60% of any employee population, this group is very often ignored from an intervention perspective because their needs and interests often lie outside the realm of physical health. Their needs and interests lie in the other dimensions of wellness such as the social, intellectual, emotional and occupational dimensions.
The no/low risk segment of the employee population may also see the traditional worksite wellness approach which focuses solely on physical health as not being helpful because it adds nothing to their personal health and wellness orientation or practices. This is an opportunity lost as the no/low risk individual is in a great position to serve as an employee health and wellness champion or ambassador to their peers who may have significant health risks or already diagnosed health challenges.
How might you better serve your no/low risk employee population? Here are a number of programming ideas for the other dimensions of wellness that your no/low risk employee population may find engaging:
Emotional Dimension – Possible programming in this dimension could include: stress management, resiliency, optimism, positivity, mental health and mental illness, substance abuse, happiness, gratitude, humor and mindset.
Social Dimension – Subject areas in this dimension might include: social relationships, family relationships, best friend at work and peer relationship concepts.
Intellectual Dimension – Topical areas in this dimension could include brain and health fitness.
Spiritual Dimension – Topics within this dimension could include: meaning and purpose of life, beliefs and values.
Occupational Dimension – Possible programming in this dimension could include: professional/career development, meaningful and purposeful work, job fit, personal performance, morale and motivation.
Hopefully you now have some ideas for how your worksite wellness wheel might become more balanced unless fragmented.